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Gebremedhn H.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Tesfay Z.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Murutse G.,Mekelle University | Estifanos A.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute
Livestock Research for Rural Development | Year: 2013

Tigray region is one of the potential beekeeping areas of Ethiopia which is endowed with diversified honeybee plants. However, the plants were not identified and their floral calendar was not established. Hence, this study was designed to identify important honeybee plants and develop floral calendar of two watersheds. It was also designed to draw the interactive effect of the seasonal availability of bee plants with swarming, absconding and honey harvesting in Debrekidan and Begasheka watersheds of Tigray Regional State. For this study, thirty farmer beekeepers were selected using purposive random sampling technique from each watershed. The data were collected using unstructured questioner, group and key informants discussion, and personal observation. From Debrekidan 80 and Begasheka 89 important honeybee plants were identified and their floral calendar was established. Nineteen from Debrekidan and fifteen from Begasheka different plants species were identified as major honeybee plants. Having high availability of honeybee plants from July to November in Debrekidan and from August to December in Begasheka, high swarming was recorded from August to September in both watersheds. September to November and October to December were recognized as honey harvesting time in Debrekidan and Begasheka, respectively. Due to critical dearth period from December to May in Debrekidan and from January to July in Begasheka watersheds, high absconding problem was illustrated in February. Thus, variation on seasonal availability of honeybee plants, honey harvesting, swarming and absconding was indicated between the two watersheds. Finally, it is recommended to use floral calendar to implement proper seasonal honeybee colonies and apiary management.


Gebremedhn H.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Estifanos A.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute
Livestock Research for Rural Development | Year: 2013

With high adoption of the modern beehive in the Tigray region of Northern Ethiopia, there is shortage of beeswax for preparation of the foundation sheet. Thus there is high demand of beeswax by the beekeepers and its cost has been increasing dramatically from time to time. Hence a study was designed to familiarize alternative new technology, Kenyan top bar hive (KTBH) and to evaluate its honey productivity under farmers' condition. A total of 15 honeybee colonies which had similar strength were selected for comparison of KTBH with Modern beehive (MH) under farmers' condition. Honey yield data from each hive per harvesting season was recorded immediately after harvest. The collected data were analyzed using GLM analysis of variance procedure. There was significant difference between modern and Kenyan top bar hive for honey yield. The potential productivity of the modern hive (22.8 kg/hive) was higher than the KTBH (17.8 kg/hive). In Begasheka honey yield from the modern hive (25.7 kg/harvest) was significantly higher than the Kenyan top bar hive (17.8 Kg/harvest). While, in Debrekidan there was no significant difference between both hives. It is therefore recommended to use the KTBH as an alternative technology in areas like Debrekidan watershed for farmers with little skill in modern hive management and to minimize the shortage of beeswax.


Atsbha T.,Alamata Agricultural Research center | Estifanos A.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Wayu S.,Alamata Agricultural Research center | Tesfay T.,Alamata Agricultural Research center | Baraki A.,Alamata Agricultural Research center
Livestock Research for Rural Development | Year: 2015

The experiment was undertaken at Emba Alaje District, Ayba Peasant Association (PA) for two consecutive years, which is 2013 to 2014, to evaluate forage yield of the natural pasture through application of urea and slurry and third control one. A factorial RCBD design replicated three times with two factors and three levels were used. Each treatment was allocated to 25m2 in both years. Partial budget analysis, dominance analysis and marginal rate of return were calculated to compare treatments economic benefits. Seven grasses, five annual legumes and two other herbaceous species belonging to different families were identified in all the plots. Dry matter yield (DMY) significantly increased by application of urea over the application of slurry and the control. The relative proportion of grass, and legumes reached highest and significant by urea application. The effect of years was also only significantly varied for DMY. The interaction effect of fertilization with years was significantly different for all the parameters with the highest result being for application of urea except for legumes and other plant species composition. However, application of slurry is an economical way of degraded pasture land improvement and improves grass-legume species composition. © 2015 Fundacion CIPAV. All rights reserved.


Teferi T.A.,Alamata Agricultural Research Center | Gebreslassie Z.S.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center
Crop Protection | Year: 2015

Septoria tritici blotch is an important disease in many wheat-producing areas of Ethiopia which causes significant yield losses. To investigate the intensity of Septoria tritici blotch in Tigray, where wheat is one of the major crops, disease assessment surveys were conducted from 2011 to 2013 main cropping seasons. It was based on inspection of wheat fields randomly selected at 5km intervals along accessible routes. The result showed that the disease incidence and severity varied from season to season and across locations within the region. Fifty two, 147 and 137 fields were examined from 2011 to 2013, respectively. During 2011, Septoria tritici blotch was present in 53% of the inspected fields with mean incidence and severity of 14% and 19%, respectively. Likewise, the disease was also important in 2012 and 2013 seasons with grand prevalence of 64% and 38%, in that order. The mean incidence and severity of the disease was 50% and 17% in 2012 and 28% and 13% in 2013, respectively. The survey also confirms that no variety has been identified with a high level of resistance, and only varieties with partial resistance or that could tolerate the disease and produce reasonable yields. Therefore, development and deployment of resistance varieties coupled with periodic investigation of the pathogen diversity needs due emphasis for safeguarding of wheat production sustainably. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


Melaku S.,Haramaya University | Aregawi T.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Nigatu L.,Haramaya University
Agroforestry Systems | Year: 2010

The study was conducted in Abergelle district of Tigray, northern Ethiopia with the objectives of evaluating the chemical composition, in vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD) and in sacco degradability characteristics of foliages of major browse species. Samples of foliages from 12 and 10 browse species were collected during the wet and dry seasons, respectively. The samples of the browse species were collected based on their abundance in the district, preference by livestock to browse them, accessibility to browsing and their additional uses other than livestock feed. The neutral detergent fiber (NDF) was higher in the browse species during the wet compared to the dry season except for Sterculia africana and Ziziphus spina-christi. Similar trends were observed for acid detergent fiber (ADF) content except for Acacia asak. The condensed tannins content and the IVDMD of the browse species had inverse relationships in both seasons. The in sacco dry matter (DM) and nitrogen degradability parameters of the browse species were seasonally variable. Based on in sacco potential DM and nitrogen degradation of the browse species in both seasons, Acacia oerfota, Acacia tortilis, Balanites aegyptiaca, Boswellia papyrifera, Sterculia africana, Terminalia brownii and Ziziphus spina-christi were ranked to be superior in their nutritive value, and thus can have better use as animal feeds. Consequently, these browse species could be considered in agro-forestry systems for better integration of livestock production with available feed resources in semi-arid areas. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.


Gebramlak G.D.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Abadi N.,Mekelle University | Hizikias E.B.,Mekelle University
Ethnobotany Research and Applications | Year: 2016

Oxytenanthera abyssinica (A.Rich.) Munro is known to be one of the lowland perennial grass species in Ethiopia with tremendous products and ecological services. It is uncommon to find O. abyssinica at the homestead as it was commonly found in the study area as part of an agroforestry system. This study was conducted to assess socioeconomic benefits of O. abyssinica and factors that influence farmers’ decision to use homestead agroforestry systems, based on a survey of 153 households in Serako kebele, Tselemti woreda, Ethiopia. This paper evaluates, using descriptive statistics, propensity score matching and logit regression analysis. The analysis demonstrates that farmers make decisions to grow O. abyssinica as homestead agroforestry systems based on household and field characteristics. The factors that significantly influenced growing decisions include homestead land holding size, total livestock owned, extension advice, and distance to local market. The average treatment effect (ATT) results show that the households with an O. abyssinica grower had significantly higher annual household income, annual expenditure, and number of months with enough food when compared to the control group. Therefore, we conclude that development of infrastructures that link producers with consumers, availability of large homestead land size, and expansion of extension facilities may enhance engagement of domestication of O. abyssinica at the homestead for sustainable livelihood options. © 2015, University of Hawaii at Manoa. All rights reserved.


Belay S.,Abergelle Agricultural Research Center | Gebru G.,Abergelle Agricultural Research Center | Godifey G.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center | Brhane M.,Abergelle Agricultural Research Center | And 3 more authors.
Livestock Research for Rural Development | Year: 2014

This study was undertaken to evaluate the pre and post weaning growth of F1 crossbred Boer-Abergelle goat kids, and reproductive performance of pure Abergelle under a semi-intensive management system. The study was implemented in Abergelle Agricultural Research Centre goat farm in northern Ethiopia. Three independent variables: namely birth type, sex and parity number and seven dependent variables: body weight (BW), weaning weight (WW), six-month weight (SMW), yearling weight (YW) and weight gains to weaning, six months and one year were analyzed. A total of 166 F1 kids of which 90 were from the first parity, 53 from the second and 23 from the third parity were used to evaluate the growth rate of the crossbred kids. Yearling weights of the crossbred kids were higher for males than for females. The highest values for WWG, SMWG and YWG were observed in the first parity. Average kidding interval of the Abergelle goats was 11.3 months with a minimum and maximum of 9 and 17 months, respectively. Prolificacy rates were 1.06, 1.11 and 1.07 in 2009, 2010 and 2011, respectively. Generally, Boer-Abergelle F1 kids had high growth rates (range 73 to 113 g/day) and had low mortality, especially pre-weaning. Purebred Abergelle goats had long kidding interval and most had single births.


Gebremariam T.,Mekelle University | Belay S.,Mekelle Agricultural Research Center
Tropical Animal Health and Production | Year: 2016

A study was carried out with the objective to assess the utilization practices of local feed resources. It was implemented in Tanqua-Abergelle district of the Tigray region, Northern Ethiopia. Lemlem and Gera peasant associations (PAs) were selected purposively based on their potentiality in livestock resources and road access for household (HH) interview purpose. Likewise, Sheka-Tekli and Hadinet PAs were chosen for the purpose of focus group discussion (FGD). A total of 60 HHs (30 from each PA) were selected randomly for interview using semi-structured questionnaire. About 16 % of the respondents were female HHs. Two FGDs were held with key informants. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS (2013, version 21) statistical software procedures. The study area is characterized by mixed crop-livestock farming system with high interaction between crop and livestock. Livestock are the mainstay for the farm community with many benefits as sources of draught, meat, milk, income, and manures. Cattle are kept primarily for the purpose of draught power with meat and milk as secondary products, whereas shoats are kept mainly for cash income, manure, meat, and milk. The land holding size per HH was 1.44 ha while the herd size was 4.93 tropical livestock unit (TLU). Almost all the land holding (97 %) is allocated for crop cultivation with lesser for forage production (<1 %) indicating poor attention for fodder harvesting. The cattle herd is composed of local breeds (99 %) with less exotic/crossbred (1 %), indicating that the livestock rearing is practiced using local breed. Crop residues, natural pastures, stubble grazing, hay, and browsing are the main feed resources for animals. The availability and contribution of each feed vary with season and areas. Sorghum stover is the main feed source in the area and followed by maize stover, Eragrostis tef straw, and pulse straws. Crop residues are fed as basal diet with no or less supplementation using local concentrates like Attela and mill by-products. Industrial by-products are rarely used in the livestock feeding system for their high price and less availability. Likewise, improved forages are not widely utilized as feed sources. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht


PubMed | Mekelle Agricultural Research Center and Mekelle University
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Tropical animal health and production | Year: 2016

A study was carried out with the objective to assess the utilization practices of local feed resources. It was implemented in Tanqua-Abergelle district of the Tigray region, Northern Ethiopia. Lemlem and Gera peasant associations (PAs) were selected purposively based on their potentiality in livestock resources and road access for household (HH) interview purpose. Likewise, Sheka-Tekli and Hadinet PAs were chosen for the purpose of focus group discussion (FGD). A total of 60 HHs (30 from each PA) were selected randomly for interview using semi-structured questionnaire. About 16% of the respondents were female HHs. Two FGDs were held with key informants. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS (2013, version 21) statistical software procedures. The study area is characterized by mixed crop-livestock farming system with high interaction between crop and livestock. Livestock are the mainstay for the farm community with many benefits as sources of draught, meat, milk, income, and manures. Cattle are kept primarily for the purpose of draught power with meat and milk as secondary products, whereas shoats are kept mainly for cash income, manure, meat, and milk. The land holding size per HH was 1.44ha while the herd size was 4.93 tropical livestock unit (TLU). Almost all the land holding (97%) is allocated for crop cultivation with lesser for forage production (<1%) indicating poor attention for fodder harvesting. The cattle herd is composed of local breeds (99%) with less exotic/crossbred (1%), indicating that the livestock rearing is practiced using local breed. Crop residues, natural pastures, stubble grazing, hay, and browsing are the main feed resources for animals. The availability and contribution of each feed vary with season and areas. Sorghum stover is the main feed source in the area and followed by maize stover, Eragrostis tef straw, and pulse straws. Crop residues are fed as basal diet with no or less supplementation using local concentrates like Attela and mill by-products. Industrial by-products are rarely used in the livestock feeding system for their high price and less availability. Likewise, improved forages are not widely utilized as feed sources.

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